011 Couple Cofounding: The Wave of the Future with a Link to Our Past

Mar 6, 2019

011 Couple Cofounding: The Wave of the Future with a Link to Our Past

Mar 6, 2019

 While couples launching businesses together may seem like a new phenomenon, the family business is the oldest and most common model of economic organization.

Professor William O’Hara, the pre-eminent expert on this subject, stated the following in his book, Centuries of Success: “Before the multinational corporation, there was family business. Before the Industrial Revolution, there was family business. Before the enlightenment of Greece and the empire of Rome, there was family business.”

The Industrial Revolution marked a major turning point in history, and almost every aspect of daily life was influenced in some way. In fact, some argue that the Industrial Revolution lowered the status of women as the economy transitioned from the family business to the mechanized factory system.

For centuries, the home was a central unit of production and women played a vital role in running family farms or small family businesses. In fact, their useful roles gave them a sort of equality with their husbands. However, during the Industrial Revolution, husbands began taking paid jobs outside the home. Wives became responsible for performing household work, and since this work remained unpaid while the wages of their husbands continued to increase, they continued to lose social status.

It is no wonder the Information Age of the twenty-first century, characterized by the rapid shift from traditional industry that the Industrial Revolution brought through industrialization, to an economy based on information technology, has also ushered in a resurgence of the family business. Thanks to technology and the internet, couples can sell their goods and services to customers around the world. And, they can sell them from anywhere in the world, making entrepreneurship especially attractive for couples.

In this episode, Nikole and Jay discuss how the rise in entrepreneurial couples has affected the role of women in the workplace and why you should ignore the naysayers who warn you about going into business with your spouse. After all, centuries of couples successfully running family businesses can’t be wrong.  

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